Blogs from Oxford Dictionaries for Children

Browse our blogs on children’s language:

From Agent Wonka to Big Friendly Zombies, snozsprouts to puckleberries, this year’s entrants to the BBC Radio 2 500 Words competition show how Roald Dahl’s language continues to inspire them......

Any lexicographer will tell you that once you’ve worked with a corpus—a wonderfully powerful resource of real language evidence—you can never go back......

It may seem like a straightforward task to compile a dictionary of words used by Roald Dahl. But which words should go in? Only words invented by Dahl, or words that are Dahlesque in spirit?......

As Roald Dahl fans around the globe gear up for the author’s centenary this month, which also sees some of his invented words being added to the Oxford English Dictionary.......

Our Children’s Dictionaries department have announced the Children’s Word of the Year for 2016: refugee........

We’re taking a break from our A-Z as today marks the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare. To commemorate this special day, we are sharing an interesting extract from the Oxford Illustrated Shakespeare Dictionary........

Throughout April we will be bringing you an A-Z of Shakespearean words, taken from the brilliant Oxford Illustrated Shakespeare Dictionary. Every day we will be guiding you through some of the most interesting words and definitions from the dictionary, one letter at a time!........

I love dictionaries and thesauruses: they’re dazzling and thrilling and useful. I own a ridiculously large number (seven currently on my desk, though most of them are downstairs). I use them, for work and pleasure, all the time.

But now Vineeta Gupta, Head of Oxford Children’s Dictionaries, has asked me a question about them that’s completely baffled me........

The BBC Radio 2 500 WORDS competition, run by the Chris Evans Breakfast Show, asks children aged 5-13 to compose an original work of fiction in no more than 500 words........

A bank-robbing banana being chased by a police pigeon, an accident-prone spy with the nickname Double Oh No!, a crime-fighting baby who googles for clues… These are just a few of the fantastic ideas 
that children have come up with when I’ve visited schools to talk about writing stories........

False friends (‘faux amis’) are words in one language which look the same as words in another. We therefore think that their meanings are the same, and get a shock when we find they are not........

Compiling a small dictionary for children is never easy – so many words competing for space in a book with a finite number of pages. Animals and plants, clothing, fruits and vegetables, musical instruments, body parts, animal noises........

I’m a lucky man. I’ve travelled the full spectrum of Shakespeare appreciation. I’ve now played Hamlet, Macbeth, and Pericles, spoken his Sonnets, written books about him, and directed his plays, but I hated Shakespeare in school........

Charlie Higson, Andy Stanton, Jeremy Strong, Jacqueline Wilson are all well-known names in the world of children’s fiction today but not normally found in a children’s dictionary. The Oxford Children’s Colour Dictionary has this unique and exciting feature – all of these authors have written for it........

There are lots of quirks in the English language which make it tricky for children to spell words correctly. Here at OUP our Children’s Dictionaries team has a huge database of children’s writing, so they can spot exactly the kind of spellings children often struggle with........

Have you got a tabby cat? Brown or grey with dark stripes? If you have, do you know why it’s called a tabby? If not, you could guess a thousand times and never find the reason........

Curriculum changes mean that both Primary and Secondary schools are renewing their focus on spelling, punctuation, and grammar.

For primary schools, from summer 2013 year 6 children will sit an English grammar, punctuation, and spelling test, which will assess each child’s English skills in four key areas: Grammar, Punctuation, Spelling, and Vocabulary........


Today marks the start of this year’s BBC Radio 2 500 Words competition, run by the Chris Evans Breakfast Show. The competition asks children aged 13 or under to compose an original work of fiction of 500 words........

Fingers on your buzzers, please. Which of the following would you expect children today to use in their writing: gr8, lol, apotropaic, caliginous, cerulean?........

Have you ever been told as a child to ‘stop daydreaming’ and pay attention? Then you will be interested to know that daydreaming is a word that is invariably used in a negative context by adults but in a much more positive sense by children........

powered by oxford
close
close